Rallying: Kankkunen on the march

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JUHA KANKKUNEN, of Finland, increased his chances of winning a fourth world title when he steered his Toyota to victory in the 1,000 Lakes Rally in Finland yesterday.

Kankkunen started the rally with only a one-point lead in this year's championship but is now 20 points ahead. He has 91 points, while his team-mate, Didier Auriol, of France, is in second place with 71. The Ford driver, Francois Delecour, of France, who did not compete in Finland, is third with 70. Four rallies remain.

Kankkunen stayed in front for most of the three-day rally, which was staged on slippery roads in a densely forested lake district.

He was given a tough fight by his compatriot, Ari Vatanen, in a Subaru, but won by 47 seconds. Auriol came third in another Toyota. Toyota have 131 points to Ford's 111 in the battle for the manufacturers' title.

Some teams decided to stay in the southern hemisphere after the New Zealand rally earlier this month so they could prepare for the Australian rally in September. Only eight of the 50 drivers with world championship points entered the Finnish rally.

Results, Sporting Digest, page 25